World Aids Day – We have won a battle but not the war
Friday, December 1, 2017, was World AIDS Day, an occasion for people all over the world to unite in the fight against HIV. The date was established in 1987 and is dedicated to raising awareness of the AIDS pandemic caused by the spread of HIV infection and mourning of those who have left us due to the disease. The 2018 Federal theme is “You help fight HIV, now let’s end it!” End isolation, end stigma, end HIV transmission. Share the hashtag #LetsEndIt
HSH Princess Stephanie, Founder and President of Fight Aids Monaco (FAM) as well as UNAIDS International Goodwill Ambassador and her team, organized different communication and prevention operations, as well as their traditional art-auction fundraising that enables their association to continue their mission towards AIDS eradication.
Test in the City
On Wednesday, November 22, 2017, the operation “Test in the City” in the Entrance of the Fontvieille Shopping Gallery marked its 8th year in the Principality in partnership with the Princess Grace Hospital, its Emergency Service, as well as the Monegasque Red Cross. It is an anonymous screening test, free of charge and fast, with results within 10 minutes. In French the kit is known as TROD (Test Depistage rapide a Orientation Diagnostique), equivalent to Rapid HIV Testing in English, and enables to detect anti-HIV-1 and anti-HIV-2 antibodies by a simple finger prick, than can easily be carried out by non-medical people who are nevertheless trained in this procedure.
The main objective of this screening is to keep people informed of the latest scientific advances, learn how to protect oneself and others, and most importantly put an end to stigma and discrimination.
Memorial Quilts a message of love and remembrance
The 7th edition of the AIDS Memory Quilts (Courtepointes in French), took place on Monday, November 27, 2017 by displaying the quilts, both individual and collective that honors AIDS victims, in the Honor Hall of the Oceanographic Museum of Monaco. They represent a heartfelt message of love and remembrance.
In 1987 the “Names Project Aids Memorial Quilt” foundation came up with this initiative to illustrate the devastation caused by the disease. Each quilt is made of 8 canvas sewn to each other, over a surface of 4m x 4m, all bearing the name of a victim and they were all produced by people members of Fight Aids Monaco, most of them living with HIV.
Generous artists & collectors donated artworks for charity auction
A new edition of the FAM Charity Auction took place at the Meridien Beach Plaza Hotel on Thursday, December 1, 2018 in the presence of HSH Princess Stephanie accompanied by her brother HSH Prince Albert II, and her youngest daughter Camille Gottlieb, and her son Louis Ducruet.
There were 43 art pieces (sculptures, paintings, photographs, lithographs) generously donated by the generous artists or collectors, auctioned under the skillful hammer of Maitre Francois Tajan from Artcurial. A total of € 188,100 were raised, and those funds will enable the association to continue their actions. The truth is that in spite of all the efforts, HIV has not been eradicated yet and there is still a vital need to raise money, increase awareness, fight prejudice and improve education. Princess Stephanie expressed her profound gratitude to artists, donors and generous bidders for their generous participation, and affirmed: “AIDS touches everybody, it would be false to believe that this fight is an old story.”
The record for the evening was a unique piece in white bronze by Bernard Bezzina offered by the artist to support the cause, sold for Euro 30,000. The Bear of French artist Richard Orlinski was acquired for Euro 16,000 under its estimation. The funds raised in this auction are crucial to cover the running budget for the association, that accompanies daily around hundred people living with HIV.
Creating awareness among students on protection & prevention
On December 1, 2017, the Department of Education, Youth and Sports of Monaco in partnership with Fight Aids Monaco, organized events in different schools in the Principality within the framework of AIDS information and awareness. The close collaboration among the Department of Education, the Direction of Health and Social Affaires and the Center for Free Anonymous Screening, has enabled college students to attend interactive workshops and conference on AIDS. The objective is to establish a useful dialogue with the students to create awareness on the evolution of the AIDS epidemic, new available treatments, emphasizing the need for individual protection and prevention.
“We must encourage people to get educated, to get tested, to get involved in the fight against AIDS.” Gwen Moore